The Whole Person Blog: Week Two, Day One, Part 1/2 - Intentions ≠ Outcomes
Interview with Dr. Mario Martinez
Sunday, January 5th, 2020
Unsurprisingly, this January looks no different than those of the past. We're bombarded with ads promoting new ways of dieting and exercising, breaking through, and becoming healthy and happy, "once and for all." Our brain, operating as the memory-prediction machine that it is, reminds us that even the very best of intentions rarely align with our desired outcome. Why? Why is it that what we set out to do, year after year, infrequently comes to fruition. Well, while there are many reasons, one of great significance is people address WHAT happened to them instead of WHY it happened to them. For example, someone trying to lose weight will leverage physical tactics, such as diet and exercise, but the nature of gaining weight is entirely emotional. They fail to understand that weight gain is a manifestation of the problem, not the problem itself.
The MindBody Code thoughtfully expands on these ideas:
"Have you ever read a motivational or self-help book that promised you a life of abundance in ten, easy steps? If your experience is like that of many, many others, while you may have gleaned some useful ideas, in the end, you did not find your life substantially improved. Why have your efforts not yielded fruit? Ultimately, I discovered the answer to why popular methods of self-transformation so often fail: good intentions are not sufficient to enable you to access and work with the mindbody code, the set of "operating instructions" you embodied while you were growing up and that you reinforce as you move through your life as an adult. The mindbody code is the language you learn from your culture that enables you to interpret your world, shape your self-concept, find meaning in what you do. True, sustainable change requires gaining access to the cultural beliefs that deny you the rewards of your courageous commitment to change."
While it's well understood that our Mind affects our Body, we entirely misunderstand what affects our Mind, and that's our culture, largely, the environment we grew up in. Our formative experiences laid the foundation for who, and what, and where we are in our lives, and until we can see and appreciate how our conditioning (operating instructions) drives our behavior, we'll remain in a sea of frustration, resentment, disappointment, shame, and confusion. However, once we connect the dots that we're all byproducts of our experiences, and we're all doing the best we can with what we've got, we'll also connect the dots of our intentions to our outcomes.
We want to belive that more action will get us there, but it's always that chain reaction of awareness that does: Awareness --> Understanding --> Compassion --> Acceptance --> Healing --> Transformation.
"You cannot make positive choices for the rest of your life without an environment that makes those choices easy, natural, and enjoyable." Deepak Chopra